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28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself.


Verses 28 to 32 apply the principles of verses 25 to 27.


As Christ relates to the church, so the husband should relate to the wife. There is a similar oneness between husband and wife (v. 31). The husband and wife are the complement of each other. God designed the institution of marriage so that one is suited to the other.

husbands ought to love their own wives

The word “ought” carries the idea of obligation. There is no option of the husband loving his wife. He is also to love her with sacrificial love. He is not to love her only if it is convenient to him or she is nice to him. It does not matter whether she criticizes him or does not appreciate him, he is to love her.

The husband is to love his wife in the same way that Christ loves the church. As the church is Christ’s body, so the wife is the husband’s body. This is an intimate union.

as their own bodies;

To the extend a husband loves his own body, he is to love his wife. The word “as” has a quality of force in the Greek. As we take care of our bodies, we are to prudently care for our wives.

The word “own” occurs six times in verses 22 to 33. This word indicates a mutually exclusive relationship. There is no polygamy in God’s economy.

he who loves his wife loves himself.

A by-product of a husband’s love for his wife is his own personal welfare. Since his wife is part of him and intimately united with him, how he treats his wife affects him.


There is the same kind of love and union between husband and wife as there is between Christ and the church.


A husband’s love for his wife should be like Christ’s love for the church. Love is the highest responsibility of the husband to his wife. The husband should love his life as constituting his own body.